Without a full-time ride for this season, Justin Wilson is happy to be back in a race car and to have a ride for at least the next two races.
The Great Britain native will compete in Saturday’s Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis and the Indianapolis 500, both for one of the premier teams in the sport, Andretti Autosport.
“It’s great to be back and great to be part of Andretti Autosport and looking forward to the month,” the 35-year-old Wilson said during a recent IndyCar press conference. “It’s been a long off-season, a lot of time thinking about getting back in the car and what it takes and how it’s all going to work.
“I’m just pleased to get it started, and so far it seems good. We just got to take it one step at a time. There’s a lot of work to be done, new body kits, everyone is trying to work them out and get a feel for them and go from there.”
Wilson spent the last three seasons with Dale Coyne Racing, finishing 5th in 2012 (including a win at Texas), 13th in 2013 and 11th in 2014 (no wins in either season but four podium finishes in 2013, and wound up fourth in the first of two races at Belle Isle last season).
Without a full-time ride for 2015, he’s hitting reset somewhat with the two races for Andretti Autosport.
“At first it’s a little strange because you’re with a new team and there’s a lot of changes obviously with the aero kits and all that that’s going on,” he said. “When you switch teams, it’s never easy that first couple of days and that first time in the car, especially when you’re trying to squeeze in the car and get the seat just right and the belts just right and the pedals and everything else.
“It’s just nice to get all that done, and then we can start planning ahead and trying to go quick now. So that was the main focus and, you know, just get settled in.”
Wilson will get his first test with his new team in Saturday’s Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis, a warm-up for the Indy 500 just over two weeks later. He has seven career starts in the 500, with a career best of 5th in 2013 and 7th in 2012 and 2010. He finished 12th in last year’s race.
“We’ll be focused on how to get the most out of the situation for that GP,” Wilson said. “It’s great. I get to do the GP first and get used to the team and the environment and work everything else out before we get into the rest of the month of May.
“So it’s good to be part of this team, this organization, being with all the drivers. Everyone is working well together … but I think it’s going to be a good month and hopefully whatever works out between the aero kits and Chevrolet and Honda, whatever happens, hopefully we can have a good month.”